States Of Mind [Essay]

Four British cultural figures explore how their first impressions of America developed through intellectual, physical and cultural discoveries.



Crime writer P D James discusses his idea of America.


Crime writer P D James discusses his idea of America."


British-Pakistani writer Kamran Nazeer examines how his idea of America is tied up with the law, and how his younger self was inspired by the elderly men and women of the Supreme Court.


As someone with dual English and American nationality, writer Will Self examines how attitudes to America have changed since 9/11 and explores the dangers inherent in knee-jerk liberal anti-Americanism.

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Award-winning composer Errollyn Wallen ponders the parcels of exotic gifts that helped form her idea of America as a child, and how this sense of otherness has been continued in adulthood by the distinctive work of American classical composers.